ABC’s hit medical drama Grey’s Anatomy has made a decision over the future of its current season. Growing concerns over the spread of the novel coronavirus have impacted every corner of the film and television industry, with numerous — if not all at time of reporting — productions shutting down until further notice.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Grey’s Anatomy has shut down production on Season 16, its current season, for good. Due to this indefinite production shutdown, ABC announced on Friday that Season 16 would end with Episode 21, “Put on a Happy Face,” set to air on Thursday, April 9. The most recent episode to air, March 26th’s “Love of My Life,” was number 19 in the season. As is often the case with shows who get big episode orders every season, Grey’s was still filming the last of its 25 Season 16 episodes. The Season 16 finale was originally set to air in early May.
Production on Grey’s had paused earlier in March when it was still unclear what we, as a nation and global community, should expect when it comes to preventing the spread of the coronavirus. Due to the show’s renewal for Season 17, it was expected filming on that new season would begin in July. Additionally, because of Grey’s production shutdown, we don’t know how the show will handle wrapping up storylines for Season 16 or if the Season 17 premiere will in any way feature or address current storylines.
Grey’s isn’t the only TV show making big changes to their current season’s production plans. On Tuesday, March 24, we reported AMC’s The Walking Dead would be shortening its Season 10, with the new finale episode (not the only originally intended to be the finale) airing on April 5. Broadly speaking, with official estimates on when it will be safe to resume production changing, it’s unclear what we can expect from the upcoming season of broadcast television as production shutdowns inevitably delaying premiere dates. For now, we’re just going to have to wait and see how this all plays out.